I have been cranky lately. The circumstances of my life, although delightful in most ways, are not ideal. And I have let that affect my attitude — precisely what I criticize others for doing. I am not sure exactly how bad it has been, but I have enough humility, introspection, and respect for others’ judgment to believe it has been considerably less than what it should be. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, obviously I would encourage you to ignore this paragraph. If you do know, please accept my apology.
Life can be a trial. In fact, life is a trial. God is putting us to the test, as He did with Israel of old (Deuteronomy 8:2) to find out what we are made of. And like it or not, a much truer reading is usually given in bad times than in good times. True, some people can be jerks when they have the world by the tail. But most of us feel we can “afford” to be kind on our good days. On our bad days, though, we feel justified in being angry, bitter, cranky, dismissive, the whole alphabet soup of interpersonal infractions.
We are not justified, though. We are just lazy. My mantra in all things for several years has been, “Work harder.” And my attitude is a great place to utilize that advice.
Rationalizing my rotten attitude shows I haven’t been listening to Jesus enough, because Jesus says, “The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil” (Matthew 12:35). Clearly I need to find more good treasure and give it a home in my heart.
That reminds me. I need to do my Bible reading.